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Featured Speakers

Vernice Armour headshot

Vernice "FlyGirl" Armour

You Have Permission to Engage

Howard Gillman headshot

Howard Gillman

UC Irvine Chancellor

Johnese Spisso headshot

Johnese Spisso

President, UCLA Health
CEO, UCLA Health System
Associate Vice Chancellor, UCLA Health Sciences

Gerry Preciado headshot

Gerry Preciado

Creating a Workplace Where People Thrive

Michael J. Beck headshot

Michael J. Beck

UCLA Administrative Vice Chancellor

Ron Coley headshot

Ron T. Coley

UC Riverside Vice Chancellor of Business Administrative Services

Daniel Seddiqui headshot

Daniel Seddiqui

Settling is the Biggest Sacrifice

Dwaine Duckett headshot

Dwaine B. Duckett

UC Vice President Systemwide Human Resources

Donna Salvo headshot

Donna Salvo

Conference Moderator
Executive Director, Systemwide Talent Management & Staff Development

Nancy Chen Lane headshot

Nancy Chen Lane

Conference Moderator
Systemwide Talent Acquisition and Management Senior Director, UC Office of the President


Featured Guest Speakers

Vernice FlyGirl Armour headshot

Vernice "FlyGirl" Armour

You Have Permission to Engage

Leveraging her “Breakthrough Mentality” mindset, Vernice propelled herself from beat cop to combat pilot in a record-breaking three years and became the United States Marine Corps’ first African American female pilot and, shortly thereafter, was recognized as America’s First African American Female Combat Pilot by the Department of Defense. Vernice now travels extensively in order to create a global movement based on her “Breakthrough Mentality” mindset.

Vernice will focus her keynote on the need for leaders to step up, lead and "Get Gutsy". Our society and global community need people to take personal responsibility and accountability. We win or lose together. One Mission, One Goal, One Team™. She will show attendees how to harness the power of this “Breakthrough Mentality” mindset and create breakthroughs for their teams with five simple steps.

Vernice Armour Session:

August 3  •  11:30am-12:30pm

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Gerry Preciado headshot

Gerry Preciado

Creating a Workplace Where People Will Thrive: Empowering Your Team by Removing Workplace Wedges

Gerry’s areas of expertise and emphasis are leadership, organizational development, conflict resolution, team building, and team development. After spending several years as an employment law trial attorney, Gerry realized that rather than being part of the solution to create great workplace environments, he was part of the problem. Having seen the proverbial light and error of his ways, he spent several years developing an approach to leading and managing people, and empowering them to positively manage and respond to conflict and other workplace challenges.

Gerry will focus his keynote on how to create a positive work environment where people will thrive, with a discussion on developing a proactive approach to managing conflict and empowering employees with the skills and tools needed to remove personal and workplace wedges.

Gerry Preciado Session:

August 2  •  1:15-2:15pm

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Daniel Seddiqui headshot

Daniel Seddiqui

Settling is the Biggest Sacrifice

You will hear from Daniel Seddiqui, the man who worked 50 Jobs in 50 States. USA Today honored him with the title, The Most Rejected Man in the World. He will share his methods for stretching our comfort zone so we can engineer our own path and ultimately steer us to find places of meaning in the world. The audience will be challenged to fail energetically and experiment exuberantly. Daniel will encourage us to uncover our many talents through curiosity and courage, and will show us that the world is filled with choices to pursue something greater. He proves that potential lies in each one of us and that we shouldn't overlook those who don't have the standard qualifications.

Daniel Seddiqui Session:

August 2  •  5:30-6:30pm

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Featured UC Speakers

Howard Gillman headshot

Howard Gillman

UC Irvine Chancellor

Howard Gillman was appointed by the University of California Board of Regents as the sixth chancellor of the University of California, Irvine on September 18, 2014. He is an award-winning scholar and teacher with an expertise in the American Constitution and the Supreme Court. He holds faculty appointments in the School of Law, the Department of Political Science (within the School of Social Sciences), the Department of History (within the School of Humanities), and the Department of Criminology, Law, and Society (within the School of Social Ecology), and every year co-teaches an undergraduate seminar.

Under Chancellor Gillman’s leadership, UCI has accelerated its ascendency among globally preeminent research universities. It has been ranked in the top 10 of all public universities in the nation by U.S. News & World Report; doubled its annual philanthropic fundraising to an all-time high, including receiving the largest single gift in the campus’s history; increased its annual research support by more than $100 million, also setting a new record; established the Sue and Bill Gross School of Nursing; furthered its national leadership in sustainable practices; demonstrated its status as a “first choice” college for undergraduates by receiving more than 100,000 freshman and transfer applications for fall 2017, including the second-highest number of applicants from California residents among all UC campuses; fostered regional economic development by establishing the premier local entrepreneurial incubator; announced Illuminations, an arts and culture initiative that enhances student exposure to the arts through enhanced regional partnerships; and developed a new strategic plan, Bright Past, Brilliant Future, that sets out a bold and ambitious road map for growth, expanding the university’s capacity to improve lives in our region and around the world.

Chancellor Gillman previously served as provost and executive vice chancellor (from June 2013) and interim chancellor (from July 2014). Before that, he spent more than two decades at the University of Southern California, where he held faculty appointments in the Departments of Political Science and History, and, by courtesy, in the Gould School of Law. From 2005 to 2012 he served as dean of the Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, the largest, oldest, and most academically diverse unit at USC.

Chancellor Gillman has long been recognized for teaching excellence and dedication to students, earning numerous teaching, academic and scholarly honors throughout his career, and as a frequent guest lecturer and prolific author of academic papers, articles, and book chapters.

A native of Southern California, Chancellor Gillman grew up in North Hollywood and was a first-generation college student. He earned bachelor’s (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa), master’s, and doctoral degrees in political science at UCLA. His wife, Ellen Ruskin-Gillman, earned her bachelor’s degree at UC San Diego and master’s and doctoral degrees in psychology at UCLA. They have two children.

Howard Gillman Session:

August 3  •  2:45-3:30pm

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Johnese Spisso headshot

Johnese Spisso

President, UCLA Health
CEO, UCLA Health System
Associate Vice Chancellor, UCLA Health Sciences

Johnese Spisso, MPA, was appointed to the position of President of UCLA Health, CEO of UCLA Hospital System and Associate Vice Chancellor of UCLA Health Sciences on February 8, 2016. She is a nationally recognized academic healthcare leader with more than 30 years of experience, and oversees all operations of UCLA’s hospitals and clinics as well as the health system’s regional outreach strategy.

Before coming to UCLA, Spisso spent 20 years at UW Medicine, in Seattle, Washington, where she was chief health system officer and vice president of medical affairs for the University of Washington. While there, she played a major role in expanding collaborations with regional hospitals and in the operational integration of two major community hospitals into UW Medicine. She also helped to lead development of a statewide trauma system.

Trained as a registered nurse, Spisso rose through the ranks at UC Davis Medical Center to direct critical care; trauma, burn and emergency services; and the Life Flight Air-Medical Program. Before that, she was a critical-care nurse in the medical, surgical and transplant intensive care unit at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Presbyterian.

Spisso received a master’s degree in health care administration and public administration from the University of San Francisco, and a bachelor’s degree in health sciences from Chapman College. She received her nursing degree at the St. Francis School of Nursing. She has published numerous articles and book chapters on healthcare leadership.

Johnese Spisso Session:

August 3  •  8:00-8:45am

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Michael Beck headshot

Michael J. Beck

UCLA Administrative Vice Chancellor

Michael J. Beck began his UCLA service as the Administrative Vice Chancellor on March 1, 2016. With senior management responsibility for a broad spectrum of administrative, operational and service units, he is responsible for developing policy, monitoring compliance and overseeing campus operations in the following areas: Campus Human Resources; Central Ticket Office; Environment, Health & Safety; Events and Transportation; Facilities Management; Financial & Administrative Services; Housing and Hospitality Services (including faculty and staff housing, and UCLA conference centers); Information Technology Services; and the UCLA Police Department. The organization has an annual operating budget of approximately $625 million and more than 4,400 employees.

Prior to arriving at UCLA, Mr. Beck served as the City Manager for the City of Pasadena since October 2008. With responsibility for the overall operation of the city’s government and an annual operating budget of approximately $685 million, he managed 14 departments within the city, including finance, fire, housing and career services, human resources, human services and recreation, information technology, libraries and information services, planning and community development, police, public health, public works, transportation, and water and power.

During Mr. Beck’s tenure in Pasadena, he developed a five-year fiscal plan to reverse a structural operating deficit; led an economic development strategic planning effort, which resulted in the creation of Innovate Pasadena – a non-profit organization committed to advancing the greater Pasadena area as a leading center of innovation for technology and design; developed and implemented a $150 million funding solution for an unfunded pension liability; championed capital investment appropriations of $670 million for renovations to public facilities, infrastructure and equipment, including the $182 million Rose Bowl renovation project; managed the emergency response of a devastating windstorm in 2011; and developed a department of information technology to better utilize technology to serve the community.

Mr. Beck previously served as assistant city manager (2004-08) and deputy city manager (2001-04) for the City of Riverside, where he was responsible for creating the funding strategy for the $1.8 billion Riverside Renaissance infrastructure initiative. From 1987 to 2001, he worked at UC Riverside in different capacities, including director of economic development and real estate services and director of new initiatives and special programs.

Mr. Beck served as president of the California chapter of the International City/County Management Association and on other non-profit boards. He earned a B.A. in business economics and an MBA from UC Riverside.

Michael Beck Session:

August 3  •  8:00-8:45am

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Michael Beck headshot

Ron T. Coley

UC Riverside Vice Chancellor of Business Administrative Services

As Vice Chancellor of Business and Administrative Services at the University of California, Riverside, Ron Coley oversees a budget of $89 million and approximately 600 employees working in a variety of campus business and support services, including financial accountability, architects and engineers, human resources, payroll, purchasing, parking, police, environmental health and safety, physical plant, and risk management. The campus has a current student enrollment of nearly 22,000.

Mr. Coley began his career with the University of California in 1998 at the University of California, Berkeley, where in 2007, he received the Berkeley Staff Assembly’s Excellence in Management Award, which is based on the recommendations of staff members. Before joining the UC system, Mr. Coley served for six years as a Senior County Administrator in Orange County, California.

A U.S. Marine Corps helicopter pilot, Mr. Coley completed 20 years of distinguished military service from 1972-1992 retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. During his military career, he helped the Marine Corps adjust to the changing economic environments caused by the massive defense buildups in the 1980s and the equally drastic cutbacks in the 1990s.

Counted among the achievements that he is most proud of, Mr. Coley led the project that combined the procurement operations of UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco which has resulted in nearly $30 million in savings for each campus to date.

Mr. Coley earned his MBA degree from the Wharton School of Business, majoring in Finance and Managerial Accounting, and his Bachelor of Science degree from Pennsylvania’s Drexel University where, as a student-athlete, he majored in Business Administration and Industrial Relations. He was later inducted into Drexel’s Athletic Hall of Fame for his outstanding performance and achievements in men’s basketball.

Vernice Armour Session:

August 3  •  8:00-8:45am

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Dwaine B. Duckett headshot

Dwaine B. Duckett

UC Vice President Systemwide Human Resources

As Vice President, Mr. Duckett is responsible for Systemwide Human Resources and programs. This includes Strategic Planning, Employee/Labor Relations, Talent Management, Health & Welfare benefit policies and programs, Senior Management Recruitment, Compensation, Performance Management, and ensuring compliance with the University’s Staff Human Resources policies. He also serves as the primary fiduciary, as delegated by the Board of Regents and the President, to oversee all aspects of benefit plans and is the Plan Administrator for the University of California Retirement System (UCRS). Duckett is the Chair for the Association of American Universities (AAU) Human Resources Institute which is comprised of the top Human Resources Officials from the 60 largest and most prominent research universities in the U.S. and Canada.

Mr. Duckett’s primary experience has been in leading and transforming various human resources functions within large multi-billion dollar corporations. In his most recent assignment before joining UC, he served as Vice President of Human Resources for Heinz North America, the largest division of the H. J. Heinz Company. He has held several chief and senior level human resources positions for organizations such as AT&T Wireless, Automatic Data Processing Incorporated (ADP), the Pepsi-Cola Company, Covisint LLC, Phillip Morris, and Sony.

His primary focus at UC is to build the human resources organization to add strategic value. He is also charged with leading efforts to continuously improve the function and services it provides. The University has 190,000 faculty and staff across its ten campuses, five medical centers and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Dwain Duckett Session:

August 3  •  8:45-9:30am

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Donna Salvo headshot

Donna Salvo

Conference Moderator
Executive Director, Systemwide Talent Management & Staff Development

Donna Salvo has been with the University of California since 2010 and appointed as Executive Director, Systemwide Talent Management and Staff Development in 2012. Today, she is responsible for the initiatives related to Systemwide strategies and programs which include attracting, hiring, deploying, developing and retaining UC’s Talent. Her focus is to lead and identify best practices in a systemwide integrated talent management function that enables employees to grow, perform and succeed by strengthening the connections between the employee and their opportunities at UC.

Known for her vast expertise in aligning strategies to attract key talent, improve performance, drive leadership effectiveness and employee engagement she is passionate about advancing the disciplines in talent management by creating positive experiences for the organization. As a result she has shared her insights at 2011, 2012, 2013 LinkedIn Talent Connect, 2016 Perspectives, and 2017 HCI conferences and webinars. She serves as a thought leader and talent management innovator for which she and her team were recognized in 2016 with “creating an impact in Higher Education” a global award from Skillsoft/Sum Total.

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Nancy Chen Lane headshot

Nancy Chen Lane

Conference Moderator
Systemwide Talent Acquisition and Management Senior Director, UC Office of the President

Nancy builds talent strategy aligning higher education organizational culture and people to business strategy. With knowledge and understanding of higher education organizational development and current workforce challenges, she implements talent development leading practices that enhance employee engagement and contributions. She has over 19 years public and private higher education experience working with staff, faculty, and students specializing in leadership and management, organizational and talent development, change management, performance management, coaching and communication, conflict resolution, and diversity awareness. Nancy holds a Masters in Higher and Postsecondary Education Administration from the University of Michigan and a Bachelors in Business Administration and Accounting from the State University of New York at Buffalo.

Nancy Chen Lane Sessions:

Sharing Successes: MDP Best Practices Breakout (MDP participants and graduates only)
August 3  •  9:00-10:00am

Has Performance Management Left You Dis-engaged?
August 3  •  1:30-2:30pm

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